I am a 14 year survivor of Primary Mediastinal Diffuse Large B Cell Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.
In 2001, I was 26 years old, a newly minted lawyer, married only a couple of years and ready to start my adult life when a rather routine echocardiogram to investigate some annoying symptoms I had been having (chest pain that would come and go, a racing heart, slight cough) changed my life forever.
I learned that day I had a 10 cm tumour in my chest cavity which was pushing my heart down and out of the normal position.
After biopsies, tests and a few anxiety-filled weeks, I had a diagnosis- Primary mediastinal diffuse large B cell lymphoma.
After 5 months of chemotherapy and radiation and many anxiety-ridden days waiting for tests results, I am happy to say I was in remission and have been since then.
Since that day in 2001 I have been blessed with two beautiful children who are growing into amazing and talented little people and have made countless new memories that would not be possible without the top-notch treatment I received at Princess Margaret Hospital, the advances of modern medicine made possible through scientific research and of course the support of my husband, family and friends.
Being on the happy side of the survival statistics is a privilege and one I try very hard, every day, not to lose sight of. Every single day you wake up and you are alive is a gift and it should be treated as such!
Melanie Schweizer, DLBCL Survivor, Ontario, Canada